The Presto Dehydro Electric Food Dehydrator is a great, easy-to-use unit if you want to try your hand at dehydrating your own food to save time and money. Instead of purchasing dried goods from your local grocer, you can dry your food at home, and you'll be pleasantly surprised at the amount of savings you can realize. Just a small measure like drying herbs that you've grown in tiny planter pots on a windowsill can provide you with some excellent seasonings for a fraction of the cost of store-bought dried herbs.
We cut bananas into slices between 1/8- and 1/4-inch thick, and the Presto Dehydro food dehydrator gave us slices that were not totally dry after six hours. At the eight-hour mark, they were dry but not crisp, and they tended to stick to the rack. Once removed from the rack and allowed to air dry, the chips were correctly dehydrated and ready to store.
The Presto’s four-tray system makes drying seafood, poultry and homemade jerky, as well as fruits and vegetables, an easy process. Drying fruits and vegetables helps preserve their nutrients and vitamins, and if you do this yourself, you'll end up with healthy foods that contain no artificial additives or preservatives.
The Presto's bottom-mounted fan and heating element help dry by providing consistent air flow for optimum drying. This means no tray rotation is necessary, which is a welcome benefit if you have a busy life and cannot keep returning to the dehydrator to switch out trays.
This dehydrator is expandable up to eight trays, increasing the drying capacity, which means more food can be dried at the same time. The transparent cover allows you to monitor drying progress on the top tray during the entire dehydration procedure. The trays and covers for this model are easy to clean if you choose to wash them by hand, because they can be fully immersed in a sink full of hot, soapy water. Even better, they are dishwasher safe. The Presto's compact size means it is easy to use and store. If you want to make more dried food with each batch, though, consider Cabela's Commercial Food Dehydrator.
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While most dehydrators waste space when not being used, the stackable Presto lets you flip the trays over and stack them in the recessed base. This reduces the amount of space this machine requires for storage by about 35 percent. In addition, you can store the cord for this device on the bottom of the machine so it isn't taking up space in a cupboard. These two features are a great help when it comes to storing the machine when not in use.
You get a helpful user manual and drying guide when you buy the Presto Dehydro Electric Food Dehydrator. You also can purchase additional drying trays if you want to preserve more food at one time, and the company also sells nonstick mesh screens, fruit roll sheets and seasonings for jerky. You can buy jerky guns as well, which are devices that you fill with ground meat mixed with seasonings. You use the gun to expel strips of the meat before dehydrating them. In general, this is a capable food dehydrator that you can store more efficiently than other models.